One Word by Stephen House

Carpe Diem Series

I cannot think of a more elegant piece of work to end the Carpe Diem Series than this inspirational poem by Stephen House! What better way to seize the day than to put our attention towards love!

My Favorite Line, “ocean wander shares deep thought
hold all said in one word read
appreciate the gift to grasp
know well the word arrived by wind”


one word

stop my walk on empty beach
sit to rest on flat rock seat
breathe in fresh morning air
sun and waves give calm relax
gaze out horizon blue green frame
white cloud sky on glimmer sea
screwed up ball of paper blowing
stops soft against my foot

pick up the paper not sure why
maybe drawn to colour lemon
unscrew scrap dry faded torn
smooth out straight on naked knee
first notice image tight embossed
a flower i think a rose
top left corner slightly ripped
words hand-written underneath

can’t make out smeared ink scribble
only one word clear remains
love it says unmistaken
then blurs into greying swirl
the spelt out single message
reminds of love in my life near
the special ones friends and family
that without my life hang barren

paddle slowly in icy shallows
ocean wander shares deep thought
hold all said in one word read
appreciate the gift to grasp
know well the word arrived by wind
but also sure was meant for me
for in the weeks preceding here
a struggle in my days sat heavy

and just the chance to reflect upon
those ones dearly close to me
brings a smile and warm of heart
at how fortunate i am
the crumpled paper piece i hold
feel it gently in clasp fingers
fold it twice a treasure now to keep
slip it in my pocket cherished


Artist:

Stephen House is an award winning Australian playwright, poet and actor. He’s won two Awgie Awards (Australian Writer’s Guild) , Adelaide Fringe Award, Rhonda Jancovich Poetry Award for Social Justice, Goolwa Poetry Cup, Feast Short Story Prize and more. He’s been shortlisted for Lane Cove Literary Award, Overland’s Fair Australia Fiction Prize, Patrick White Playwright and Queensland Premier Drama Awards, Greenroom best actor Award and more. He’s received Australia Council literature residencies to Ireland and Canada, and an India Asialink. His chapbook “real and unreal” was published by ICOE Press Australia. He is published often and performs his work widely.

The Black Cave – Poetry by Stephen House

Adorably Horror Series – Stephen House

Today is the day! I hope your day is full of costumes and fun, all while keeping safe and healthy! I have one last artist for the Adorably Horror Series, Stephen House. Today also just so happens to be his birthday! So, go ahead and join me in enjoying his work as well as wishing him a Happy Birthday!

Happy Halloween, Ponderbots!


the black cave

the black cave is at its darkest
it’s maddest and meanest
as one would expect it to be just before dawn
when the need of those who seek is at its most agonizing

the prince’s eyes scan the room
and i close off my mind and dance
here in a cave of forever i dance
with stranger’s eyes and solitary souls
a ghoul in a corner and a howling friend
i dance with you and him and them and her
i dance with spirits and demons of always
in the cave below caves i dance and dance
even when no one else does i dance

and i have spent a thousand lost years in the caves
of underground cities in the universe of searching lost
like we are here locked together in want and hope

the prince saunters to a pack of other blood royals
and i decide i will stay above tonight
not descend into that hole below
where the prince will soon go

there is no time in the black cave
no night or day
no rules in disappeared wonder-world
no restrictions or limitations
no dream or death impossible
our exist in night is not all forlorn

i am sure now i am again seeking life
i know this anxious state
like rising from the grave
waking on the floor of the sea
or floating to another century and wondering why
am i seeking living flesh i call to all in song
the prince laughs back as he kisses a fancy wandering dream
and then gravitates towards some other blood royals
not unlike himself

because i have my blue bird with me now
i know i must be needing
it’s usually a clear indication when it’s always on my arm
shining agape beak and wings flapping wide in rhythmic beat
it was a lion before this
i say to a ghost next to me who doesn’t blink
doesn’t even seem to move
the best you can get on planet earth that i rode here
from nowhere to be in somewhere else

the prince comes back and tells me to stop telling everyone my fable
to keep the blue birds blaring down
remember why we are really here he whispers above the rattle
as he glances towards the misty hole below

i don’t need to go down to that dungeon tonight anyway
for a look or a turn with those locked up to fill our void
i know that chasm down there and i can smell the stench from here
i’ve paced those corridors of lonely gait and seen the lines of lusting seekers
i can hear the groans and pants of starving needy
twisting together from behind chained vibrating doors
i can smell the wasted bodies they devour to play dark games in void
i know exactly what’s going on in that putrid chasm right now
i’ve had hundreds of life-times peppered with it
and i don’t need to be another one on that high pitch desperate shuffle
not now in here.
i’ve got self-esteem tonight

the ghost next to me stands and materializes
floats above the ground and then drops back down
as he shakes his gleaming face from side to side
and flies to the stairs to descend into the bottomless hole of himself
i watch others come upstairs from the dungeon
and i know every single one of them

the prince is down there longer than usual
but he comes up eventually
and he hovers low next to me
leans across and brushes my neck with his freezing scarlet lips
trails his long nail down my cheek
and says that he has had his required fill below
and as the sun is about to glimpse
he will fly back the family castle
and wait for my return in whatever year i come

the blue bird shrieks the moment’s cry and i join in
as the royal prince
disappears from the black cave
with a laugh and wave of hand


Artist:

Stephen House is an award winning Australian playwright, poet and actor. He’s won two Awgie Awards (Australian Writer’s Guild) , Adelaide Fringe Award, Rhonda Jancovich Poetry Award for Social Justice, Goolwa Poetry Cup, Feast Short Story Prize and more. He’s been shortlisted for Lane Cove Literary Award, Overland’s Fair Australia Fiction Prize, Patrick White Playwright and Queensland Premier Drama Awards, Greenroom best actor Award and more. He’s received Australia Council literature residencies to Ireland and Canada, and an India Asialink. His chapbook “real and unreal” was published by ICOE Press Australia. He is published often and performs his work widely.

beach walking (alone) in winter – Poem by Stephen House

It’s the Little Things

Starting us on our journey of focusing on the little things, we have Stephen House’s savory poetry! Feel the healing power of the beach through his words.


beach walking (alone) in winter

layer up to start
peel off clothes as needed
don’t stress about carting unworn attire
stash garments under a bush
drag behind or tie around
wave in the air celebrating weather
free up from reality as needed

don’t permit dark clouds to press down
replace their weight with joy
float beneath beauty extreme
marvel at dense complexity
remember times you wanted them gone
and realize they disappeared in their own time

rain will pass
you know showers are temporary
don’t give into the notion of forever wet
drenching is experience
glimmers of sun appear
dry and warm will follow
if soaked keep walking
your resilience is incredible
accept all beyond control
relish how climate just is
how you just are

remove shoes
dance on wet sand
paddle in icy shallows
see feet turn blue in lapping seas
the elements and you are one
truth inside is the guide
as feet become numb with cold so will you
to what doesn’t matter
and there is so much insignificant
so appreciate and be

sing with the wind
the sea-weed and sand blowing
is part of a wilderness choir
stretch up and out to the unseen source
call loud the sounds held inside
your essence is more ancient than time
remember you transcend doctrines and rules
worship the unknown as you sense not as they have told
turn into the instinct of existence
freedom is the conductor of creativity
relish the gift of liberty from an unexpected icy squall

and as you take rest from beach walking (alone) in winter
rejuvenated and reborn
know that before long
you may be beach walking (alone) in spring
another season
with changes
new moods and views
brilliant colours and light
no greater or less than
as powerful and real
as the season of now and those before


Poet:

Stephen House is an award winning Australian playwright, poet and actor. He’s won two Awgie Awards (Australian Writer’s Guild) , Adelaide Fringe Award, Rhonda Jancovich Poetry Award for Social Justice, Goolwa Poetry Cup, Feast Short Story Prize and more. He’s been shortlisted for Lane Cove Literary Award, Overland’s Fair Australia Fiction Prize, Patrick White Playwright and Queensland Premier Drama Awards, Greenroom best actor Award and more. He’s received Australia Council literature residencies to Ireland and Canada, and an India Asialink.  His chapbook “real and unreal” was published by ICOE Press. He is published often and performs his work widely.